Steamboat man sentenced to 50 years for sex trafficking and child prostitution | CraigDailyPress.com

Steamboat man sentenced to 50 years for sex trafficking and child prostitution

Craig Press staff report

Miguel Diz-Martinez

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS – Guilty pleas on multiple counts of sex trafficking and child prostitution resulted in a 50-year prison sentence for one Steamboat Springs man.

Miguel Diaz-Martinez was sentenced to 50 years in prison to be followed by 10 years of probation. The sentenced was handed down on Friday, Feb. 2, by Routt District Judge Shelley A. Hill, following Diaz-Martinez’s guilty pleas to multiple counts of sex trafficking and inducement of child prostitution.

"For each victim, the decision to come forward was difficult and scary. It took tremendous courage to put words to Mr. Diaz-Martinez's heinous actions. It is my hope that today's sentence adds to each survivor's sense of resiliency and strength," Commander Annette Dopplick, Steamboat Springs Police Department, stated in a news release issued by the District Attorney’s office Friday.

The 61-year-old Diaz-Martinez was accused of exchanging drugs for sex with underage girls, and he was originally charged with 41 felonies. In September, he accepted a plea deal by which he pleaded guilty to three counts of human trafficking for sexual servitude, five counts of trafficking of minors for sexual servitude and one count of attempted sexual assault.

"Judge Hill's sentence today sends Mr. Diaz-Martinez, an insidious sexual predator on children, to prison to begin his 50-year sentence. With this sentence, our nine courageous victims can continue their recovery and healing without fear of ever seeing Mr. Diaz-Martinez again. The incredible bravery these young people in coming forward to stop Mr. Diaz-Martinez from continuing to prey on other young people cannot be overstated.  They have inspired us all," District Attorney Brett Barkey said.

The investigation stemmed from a Routt County Crime Stoppers tip in July 2016 about illegal drug activity at a Steamboat residence, leading police to the discovery of multiple sexual assault victims.

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"This first victim was identified when investigators with the All Crimes Enforcement Team uncovered a lead regarding a sexual assault that they then forwarded to the Steamboat Springs Police Department. The Steamboat Springs Police Department, and in particular, Detective Sam Silva, then picked up the case and identified the further eight victims in their painstaking, months-long investigation,” Barkey said. ” The outstanding work of these two agencies enabled us to remove from our community one of the most insidious child sexual predators in recent Routt County history."